Monday, November 22, 2004

The daily war that goes on, sight unseen.

A little of it.

"There are other types of spikes on the skin. One of the most interesting is a class of molecules called magainins, discovered by a biologist named Mike Zasloff after he wondered why live laboratory frogs that are cut open and sewed back up in nonsterile conditions rarely get infections. He showed that their skin excretes a substance which can kill bacterial cells; Since then, magainins have been discovered in many kinds of animals. But magainins, like the RNA-destroying enzymes, are not precursors to the sophisticated defense systems under the skin of animals.

To find the heavy weaponry we have to peek under our skins. The internal defense system of vertebrates is dizzyingly complicated. Like the modem U.S. army, it has a variety of different weapons that can overlap in their use. But like the weapons we discussed above we must not automatically assume the different parts of the immune system are physical precursors of each other. Although the body’s defenses are still an active area of research, much is known in detail about particular aspects. In this chapter I will discuss selected parts of the immune system and point out the problems they present for a model of gradual evolution. Those who become intrigued by the cleverness of the systems and want to know more are encouraged to pick up any immunology text for the details.

When a microscopic invader breaches the outer defenses of the body, the immune system swings into action. This happens automatically. The molecular systems of the body, like the Star Wars anti-missile system that the military once planned, are robots designed to run on autopilot. Since the defense is automated, every step has to be accounted for by some mechanism. The first problem that the automated defense system has is how to recognize an invader. Bacterial cells have to be distinguished from blood cells; viruses have to be distinguished from connective tissue. Unlike us, the immune system can’t see, so it has to rely initially on something akin to a sense of touch."
(Darwin's Black Box, By Michael J. Behe :119-120)

What narratives based on evolutionism really seem to explain best are viruses. What such hypotheses seem to have the best explanatory power for is degeneration, not generation. Besides a few things like that a lot of evolutionism is hypothesis, not theory.

But there is a summary of some of what goes on in your body, a lot of back and forth fighting, war. You are like a recycler too. When this recycling goes wrong a little girl moves stiffly, her eyes are puffy, she has an enlarged heart and other organs. She has a cough and upper respiratory problems throughout her life. She is severly retarded. She will die before the age of five. All of this because her recycling system is not working.

"In children with the I-cell disease, the garbage is dumped into the disposal as it should be, but the disposal is broken....

As a result garbage piles up, and lysosomes get filled. The cell makes new lysosomes to accomodate the increasing waste, but the new compartments eventually fill up with the detritus of cellular life. Over time the entire cell becomes bloated, tissue becomes enlarged, and the patient dies." (Ib. 113-114)

Some little girl's stories are not those of redemption and some wars are lost. At least in this time...

It is interesting that most people do not realize how healthy they are, until they get sick.

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